The new squad created by the Queensland police to deal with the growing problem of mall rats has been given a new name.
The squad of 50 full time front-line officers equipped with specialised equipment, including digital encrypted radio equipment and defensive armour, is now to be called the 'Anti-Twelvie Division', from an order made by the Queensland Police Commissioner.
The squad will liaise with shopping centre management of various shopping centres through Queensland, identify new and existing groups of mall rats that cause problems for the public order, safety and security of shoppers, and eventually, achieve 100% eradication of all illegal 'twelvie' (mall-rat) groups.
Constable Bob Smith has so far personally been on 3 task forces, and says that none of them has been successful in removing the threat of mall rats. 'All other previous task forces have been unsuccessful in removing mall rats from shopping centres where they are likely to cause an issue with the personal safety and security of shoppers, we hope that the new Anti-Twelvie Division will be able to not only remove mall rats from shopping malls and centres, we hope that we will be able to stop 100% of all twelvie groups coming to a mall or shopping centre to cause trouble, within 2 years.'
The squad has already been deployed to Broadbeach mall, where a group of youths found to be causing a public nuisance were arrested and charged with causing public disorder. They appeared before the Southport Magistrates Court and were banned from entering any shopping centre or mall for a period of 3 years.